Dendritic cells (DCs) emigrate to regional lymph nodes (LNs) during immune responses via afferent lymphatic channels. Secondary lymphoid-tissue chemokine (SLC), a CC chemokine, is expressed in secondary lymphoid organs and mediates the chemotaxis of lymphocytes and DCs via its receptor, CC chemokine receptor 7 (CCR7). By dual-label fluorescence confocal microscopy, we showed MHC class II-positive cells within SLC-staining lymphatic channels in the mouse dermis. SLC was a potent in vitro chemoattractant for cultured, migratory skin DCs, and it enhanced the emigration of MHC class II-positive DCs from mouse skin explants by an average of 2.5-fold. Mature or cytokine-activated, but not resting, Langerhans cells expressed CCR7 mRNA by RT-PCR. Anti-SLC Abs, but not control or anti-eotaxin Abs, blocked the in vivo migration of 51Cr-labeled, skin-derived DCs from footpads to draining LNs by 50% (n = 9, p < 0. 005). Thus, we provide direct evidence that SLC and CCR7 participate in the emigration of DCs from peripheral tissue to LNs via lymphatics.